Here's a story that might sound familiar. Once I received an email from a lady in her mid-forties. As a teenager she had grand dreams for her life. She expressed a zest for life and how she had visions of becoming a biochemical engineer, a politician, or maybe a maybe a prominent business person.
Without much money, she enrolled in a local community college and got a full-time job. She had several relationships none of which developed into matrimony. Then a handsome young man swept her off her feet. He proposed, and they got married. Soon they had a daughter along with the usual obligations and expenses of most parents.
She told me that the strain of working a full-time job and going to school was too much, so she quit school and became and dedicated herself to her job and newborn.
"It's been twenty-two years since I had my child," she wrote, "and now I'm ready to move ahead with my dreams." She explained that no matter how hard she tried to make her dreams come true a sense of fear and insecurity would hamper her motivation.
She got college brochures, consulted school counselors, and analyzed the job market. It seemed liked success was assured. But the voice of insecurity always talked her out of pursuing her dreams, and it was wreaking havoc with her.
She's never experienced this before and was in need of help, so she reached out to me. I explained to her that when she was young, her mind was full of dreams and visions. She had no experience with difficulties or responsibilities, so she adopted grand ideas with optimism and enthusiasm. She believed in herself and her ability to achieve. In her mind, she could see a clear mental picture of her destination, and she had the energy to get there. But after deciding to leave college, accepting debt obligations for the family, and submitting to work habits that provide a steady paycheck, her thoughts changed.
Subconsciously she accepted that this how we get things in life. Introducing an unproven idea of success was in direct conflict with the reality of the subconscious, a reality supported by her mortgage payments, car payments, and a house full of furniture. In fact, the new reality is something of a threat to what she has already proven true.
The incompatibility between her inner mind and outer mind which wants to go in a new direction is what caused her the difficulty.
I told her that if she wanted to pursue her dreams, she had to change the story of her subconscious and make it compatible with the direction she wanted to move.
Once the subconscious programming changes to reflect the new life, things would be much easier for her, and the conflict would resolve itself. I wrote the following instructions to her.
Every morning upon waking, and every evening upon going to bed take a fifteen to twenty minutes to relax and re-train your brain. Sit quietly with eyes closed and start by taking a few deep breaths. While exhaling visualize yourself letting go of all doubt and fear. During this part of the exercise, your mind will manifest thoughts why you can't accomplish your goal. Your mind will argue with you, let go of that too by exhaling. Keep doing this until you feel calm. This step may take five to ten minutes.
Next start envisioning your future with great detail. Mentally see the final destination. I instructed her to think back and remember the visions of early years. I reminded her that the feelings and emotions she felt as a teenager were still there, and recalling her memories with passion would help energize her moving forward.
A few months later I heard from her. She shared with me that she went through a profound process of discovery. The exercise I suggested brought into focus mental and emotional weaknesses she subconsciously built over many years.
She was happy to report that even though it took nearly forty days of practicing the exercise, she finally got back her confidence. Her husband also practiced the training and was unexpectedly promoted at his job.
She is now pursuing her dreams with zest and gusto, and that's what it takes to accomplish a goal, and I believe she will accomplish everything she sets her mind to do. Once your inner mind and outer mind are in harmony, a new world of possibility will open, but if your inner mind has even traces of doubt or defeat you will find yourself in the proverbial, "uphill battle."
Don't think this works for you. Here's what scientists discovered not too long ago.
In 1994, the Journal of Applied Psychology published a scientific document titled, "Does Mental Practice Enhance Performance?" The answer is, yes. They found that people who mentally practice and activity outperform those who don't.
In 2011, a randomized test showed that young medical students could perform better at mock surgeries by performing the surgery first in their mind. Since then many doctors employ the same tactic before entering the operating room today.
In 2013, mental practice analysis showed to improve the performance of pianists in a controlled lab experiment.
2 Corinthians 5:17 says this, "therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come." Is it time for you to leave behind the things that are holding you back? Is it time for you to move forward into a new future?
God gave you everything you need.